The Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) has welcomed the announcement by Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla and the government to suspend some of the control measures put in place to contain the spread of COVID-19.
We particularly welcome the decision to suspend the travel restrictions for entry into South Africa, the wearing of face masks indoors and the easing of restrictions on public gatherings.
Outdoor activities, as well as large social gatherings are the backbone of the local tourism industry. Many businesses in the industry are yet to recover financially or even get back on track due to the restrictions.
Thus the TBCSA believes this move bodes well for tourism ahead of Spring and Summer. Stakeholders in the tourism sector will now be able to fully operate and make the necessary gains in boosting their businesses, and the overall economy of the country.
TBCSA CEO Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa says the Council has been advocating behind closed doors for the government to ease restrictions. Tshivhengwa says it’s about time that the country finds new and alternative ways to deal with the pandemic.
“We understand the initial reasons for putting these measures in place. We strongly believe that the decline in the number of infections and the scientific developments support the cause for change. We hereby welcome this decision to suspend some of the remaining restrictions. These changes will allow for the sector and the economy to fully function. The removal of masks and the easing of restrictions on gatherings are quite important for tourism” says Tshivhengwa.
TBCSA will support government efforts to come up with guidelines on how to deal with COVID-19 going forward. “We need to learn to live with the pandemic” Tshivhengwa says.